6.1: Social Media Landscape

What will be next?

What will be next?

WATCH OUT!!! SOCIAL MEDIA IS GOING TO CHANGE!!!  Have you thought about running an ad on Facebook, Twitter,  or any other social media website? Well you better hurry up before its too late! Today mobile advertising is expected to reach $7.19 billion by the end of this year, with a rapid increase of up to $20.89 billion by 2016. In a 2012 study it was found that many Generation Y mobile users actually LIKE mobile advertisements. YES, I said.. LIKE.. and I wasn’t even talking about Super Bowl ads. Over half either like the ads, or have zero opinion… meaning less than half dislike the mobile advertisements.

So why do I think this is a bad thing? At first I thought, how could this be bad? I never really considered how the growth of mobile advertisements could be a bad thing, if so much of the young generations actually like it! But when I was sitting in Advertising Management class today my professor said, “Generation Y is the hardest generation to reach through Television because they know how to block it out, what do you think is going to happen when mobile advertisement is a norm?”. She’s absolutely right. With the rapid increase of spending on mobile advertisements its going to be a normal day-to-day thing that we just become used to. Once mobile advertising isn’t “new and exciting” it’s going to be “obnoxious and frustrating”. It’s human behavior, once something has been too repetitive and overdone we learn how to block it out.

Millenials-Mobile-Ad-Gender-Specific-561x300

So what can you do? Start advertising with mobile advertising today, and get a admob-mobilehead of the pack! This will help you gain recognition before the playing field becomes too crowded. In the end hopefully your viewers will remember your ads more. Keep your eyes and ears open for new opportunities to ensure that you are continuously a leader in the social media/mobile marketing industry! Other than that company’s mobile marketing strategies are going to start looking a whole lot more exciting. They are going to find new ways to reach us on our mobile phones that is unexpected, and find ways to catch our attention. Additionally, I believe the continuous rapid increase of mobile advertising will soon level out, or start decreasing. I’ll be curious to see how effective it really is in 2016, do you thik the $20.89 will be as effective as the 7.19 billion this year?

It’s a rough world out there… GOOD LUCK!

images

 

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Starbucks Social Do’s and Don’ts

Good evening! So I went to grab my morning coffee today, and decided to make a treat of

Alright, try to finish this blog before you go to Starbucks now!

it… STARBUCKS! It’s my absolute favorite. Naturally this little trip had me thinking about social media, I know it happens to you all the time too. What is their social media campaign like? I know I see them all the time, clearly it effects me positively but what about others?

So I decided to take a deeper look into the world of caramel macchiatos, pumpkin spice latte, and chai tea (just to name a few favorites).  When they first began they were 100% committed to building relationships to current Starbucks enthusiasts (http://blog.creatinemarketing.com/blog/bid/164625/Starbucks-Excels-in-Social-Media-Marketing). You love Starbucks? So do I! Let’s be friends and talk about our love for the coffee genius publically. Sounds like a good plan right? RIGHT!

No Thank You!

What didn’t Starbucks do? They did NOT tell you how wonderful the caramel macchiato is over and over again. You are an enthusiast! You know how great it is, and you know about every other product they have to offer too! They did not spam your news feed with “BUY ME ME ME!” statuses, or try to overwhelm you with everything they had to offer. They simply just wanted to be your friend. They were like the new kid at a brand new high school, they just wanted to fit in and hang out with you. This may have been the best move they could have ever made.

Their strategy focused on informing these current enthusiasts about new products, information on Starbucks, and engaging with them to improve their experience with the Starbucks brand. When they need to increase traffic, awareness, or instant sales they ran a promotion allowing the customer to get a free pastry, or discounted beverage. This type of social media marketing clearly follows the “Listen first, then engage” best practice, which answers “What’s in it for me?” (https://blackboard.snhu.edu/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_id=_2_1&url=/webapps/blackboard/execute/launcher?type=Course&id=_89057_1&url=).

However, like an social media strategy there is always room for improvement. For starters, stop ignoring your friends! Starbucks does an excellent job when it comes to posting a topic, and continually checking for comments on it to engage with. However, if you were to comment directly on their page, Starbucks ignores it (http://www.facebook.com/Starbucks?ref=ts&fref=ts) . You could be saying they are coffee gods, and the coffee tastes like magical fairy dust and they would not answer. Or imagesyou could say that the coffee had hair in it, the barista spit in your drink, and a pastry was thrown at you in Starbucks store 123 and again you would be ignored. Like I mentioned in earlier posts this is a HUGE NO NO! Starbucks could greatly benefit by responding either on the post directly, or rerouting the comment to a private setting.  Any response is better than no response, okay…maybe not ANY response… but any well thought-out, genuine, company-in-mind response is better than nothing!

But is this realistic? Say between all the social media channels Starbucks gets 1,000 social-media-responsecomments a day they would need to respond to. That’s about 125 comments an hour. THAT IS A LOT! However, it’s doable. It would require a team of employees to answer back. However, there is a feature on many of the social media managers, such as tweet deck, in which comments and tweets can be forwarded to the right person/department. Therefore, if someone is asking a sales question you could transfer their comment to the sales person for answering. You would have to treat the social media comments and tweets the same way you would treat the customer on the phone. However, to do so you would need every one answering the social media comments/tweets to be fully trained on how to replay and what to reply with. A social media code of conduct would be essential in a big company like this. It’s realistic, however depending on the current internal social media set-up it could be costly to train numerous employees. But it’s a realistic goal to work towards.

Morale of the story, if the best social media plans need work! So you are doing great!!

Thanks!

4.1: Trends and Utility

Hello Again! Remember a few blog posts ago when I made a prediction on where I thoughtbeyonce-super-bowl social media was headed? I just know you’ve hung on to every word I’ve said so I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about! But I know it was a big weekend with Super Bowl and everything (Beyonce rocked it by the way), so just incase you SLEEPY here’s a

refresher: I said it would become more specialized and more photo/video focused! Ahhh yesss now I remember that post! Well the rest of the world has now 1/2 caught up with me!!! I TOLD YOU I WAS PSYCHIC! And yes I said HALF caught up with me. Apparently,  more focused and specialized social media isn’t a huge trend just yet (but I’m sure it’s getting there), however the photo/video focused social media is HERE!

It’s here and it’s growing fast!

Trending

 

Pinterest is a newer social media site that is growing EXTREMELY fast, with growth of 1000% in just 12 months! It’s one of the biggest trends kicking off Social Media in 2013 (Souza, 2013). Pinterest is a social media site in which you

pinterest1

can share pictures, and attach a link to it. For example, if you are shopping online at the Gap and find a cute sh

irt you JUST HAVE TO HAVE, and want to show all of your friends what you are purchasing, you can “pin” it to Pinterest.

When your friend sees that picture on their pinterest “board” then they can click it and it will bring them to the exact page you pinned if from. COOL RIGHT? We’ll apparently everyone else thinks so too!

This is excellent for increasing brand awareness, and drive traffic to your website (Arthur, 2012). How does it create awareness you ask? Well 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and the brain processes visuals 60,000x faster than text (Sibley, 2012). Meaning that by using Pinterest they will understand the message faster, and hopefully have a higher recall rate of your brand/product/ad. 

Pinterest-Referral-Traffic-Percentages-4_12

Brand your content on Pinterest, and increase brand awareness.  Additionally, 21% of people with Pinterest accounts have purchased an item after seeing it on Pinterest, and have generated more referral traffic for businesses than Goolge+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined (Sibley, 2012). I’d say those are already great reasons to look further into the Pinterest trend! More traffic AND people will know who I am?? YES PLEASE!

Okay so it sounds great, but how would I go about using it? First things first you need to position yourself, you need to be able to stand out to competitors. For an example we will use Ally’s Style (It’s Fake..just go with it). Ally’s Style is an AWESOME store with the cutest clothes known to man kind, obviously.

style

But if Ally’s Style joined Pinterest it would be put up against a million other clothing stores trying to reach consumers. SO we need a position. For example Ally’s Style could be “affordable style”, “quality comfort”, “modern style”, or “luxury style”. Your position on Pinterest has to be apparent and represent your store, it’s the only way you will attract your target market and become a successful Pinner. From there you can pin not only your products, but things that influence your style. For example, “affordable style” could not only show the affordable clothes Ally’s Style has to offer, but unique ways to transform an old sweatshirt into a sweet going out shirt to save money! This will engage your customer to want to follow your pins, while still deciding if they are going to buy from you! Affordable style could then post new hairstyle to wear with Ally’s Style’s “Affordable Accessories”. With an appropriate positioning strategy it’s more likely that your Pinterest efforts will be successful.

Pinterest is a new and exciting trend, SO GET WITH IT!! Thanks again for reading my blog, and please leave comments on any suggestion you have for a first time Pinner for business!

thanks_a_ton_card-p137418180775119577b26lp_400

Don’t Believe Me? Ask these people:

Arthur, L. (2012). Pinterest:the good, the bad and the ugly. Retrieved

from http://www.forbes.com/sites/lisaarthur/2012/04/03/pinterest-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/
Souza, J. (2013, January 09). Fast company. Retrieved from http://www.fastcompany.com/3004604/social-media-trends-cant-be-ignored-2013Sibley, A. (2012). 19 reasons you should include visual content in your marketing [data] read more: http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33423/19-reasons-you-should-include-visual-content-in-your-marketing-data.aspx

 

Did You Miss Me?! Let’s Engage!

Miss_Me I’m back!!! So I kind of took a long break from the blog in between social media classes. Did you miss me??? Are you completely lost in the social media world now??? Thought so!!! Well good news… I’M BACK!!!

So now that you all know why social media is SUPER IMPORTANT and why you MUST HAVE IT I’m going to help you actually use it! The number one goal you should be focusing on is engaging your customers. It doesn’t matter how many followers you have, it matters how many relationships you are building. Your goal is NOT to have the highest number of likes. It’s better to have 100 likes/followers and 100 customers engaging with your brand on a regular basis, than to have 1,000,000 likes/followers who check your page once a year.

So to help you engage I am going to compare what two companies are doing, describing

188121

Samsung Vs. BlackBerry… Let the Games Begin

what you should be doing and what you should NOT be doing. We will call these two companies BlackBerry and Samsung Mobile (their social media links are at the end of the blog under references…I’m very helpful).

Before I get into the companies it’s important to explain what the Best Practice Principles are for Social Media before I completely loose you.

  • Social Media Takes Time: Just like I’ve said in other blog posts. You want to focus on the social media sites that will be effective for your company. It’s important to be where your customers are, and where they will engage. There is no point in putting efforts into a social media site that does not attract interaction with your target market. It will just get exhausting. Be where it matters!

    YOUR-BRANDING

    This is your brand.. NOW MANAGE IT!

  • Actively Manage Your Brand: Do not hide negative comments! This is a big NO NO! Negative comments should be looked at as an opportunity to show off your company’s customer service. It’s the one time you have to show everyone in the world that you can effectively fix a problem by going above and beyond by just demonstrating it on one individual publically. Comments that cannot be handled publically should still be addressed publically but directed to a more private setting. This will be clearer when I talk about BlackBerry. HANG IN THERE!
  • Listen First then Engage: Don’t be VAIN. Don’t talk about just yourself/ or
    You're So Vain... come on.. you had to know this was coming. Right?

    You’re So Vain… come on.. you had to know this was coming. Right?

    your brand. You need to engage the audience into your conversation by asking them questions, or highlighting things they are interested in. Whenever you post think to yourself, “Why would someone look at this page? What are they getting out of reading this post?”.  Involve your followers, and open up communication.

  • Integrate Social Sights: Advertise all of your social media sites on each social media site, does that even make sense? Read it again… I think you’ll get it. The more engagement the better, so why not have a follower tweet your blog and like it? That is three different social media channels all at once! Can you think of a way to get a 4th in there?
  • Be flexible: Grow with social media. As new trends and social media sites come out research them to see if your company should be on them. Keep up on the latest social media news, and be one step ahead! You can start by keeping up with MY blog!! So I guess you’re doing great already!

So now that I told you all of the Best Practice Principles, memorize them and swear by them. Did you do that? Great…now lets get started.

Lets start with BlackBerry. Are you thinking…Blackberry??? Are they even still around?? THEY ARE! They are working on a whole new line of smart phones that will be more APPS

BlackBerry 10 Line

BlackBerry 10 Line

based just like the iPhone, Androids, and Samsung phones that we are all obsessed with today. Which means they are making it easier to stay on top of your social media sites you are monitoring ohhh so closely while you are on the go!! WOHOO!!

Anyway, Blackberry has 5 social media sites, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flikr, and their BlackBerry Blog. These five sites are updated often, and it appears to be managed somewhat closely. By focusing on these five sites it helps the company keep a close watch on all the social media communications, and it SHOULD help them focus on engaging the followers (we’ll talk about this in the next paragraph). BlackBerry appears to have a rather large following on each site, which makes Smartone assume that they did their research to find the best social media sites to be on for their company. So that’s one principle effectively used… which one? Did you get it yet??  SOCIAL MEDIA TAKES TIME!! I knew you’d get it… you are so smart. Pat yourself on the back! I’m sure you didn’t even scroll up….

Now lets talk about how they do and don’t actively manage their brand on each social media site. We are going to focus on their Facebook and Twitter, unless you want to keep reading for another two hours while I dissect all 5 sites? NO?! Well okay then! It appears for each social media site there is a different strategy. Their twitter account does a great job managing their brand by answering customer complaints and negative feedback. The main twitter account @BlackBerry acknowledges the comments and then directs them to @BlackberryHelp who then privately resolves the issue. This shows that Blackberry is taking the time to work out the problem, but keeping the communication The-Shorty-Awardsprivate at the same time. Their twitter strategy is great, and even won them a “Shorty Award” (“Shorty awards,” 2012). Think about it, if you had a customer stand up in the middle of a presentation for 25,594 of your closest customers (aka BlackBerry’s Twitter following) you wouldn’t ignore them would you? HECK NO! You’d calmly answer to their comment, and then say “Please come up after the presentation and we can discuss this further to resolve the issue”. You don’t want to waste other people’s time/Twitter feeds, and you may have to talk confidentially. However it’s great to know that BlackBerry responded and is working to take care of the issue.

Cold_shoulder1For Facebook however, Blackberry does not seem to answer negative comments. Blackberry leaves these comments on their page for all to see, but never responds to them. Just a cold shoulder is all you get from BlackBerry here. You’d think they could apply the same concept they use on Twitter to Facebook, but apparently not.

The communication for Blackberry does not follow the social media best practices of, “Listen first, then engage”. Every post they make on both Twitter and Facebook is very “me” focused. Everything is about the Blackberry products with little happybunnyemphasis on asking viewers questions, or opening up two-way communication. Additionally, the comments left on Facebook are not answered back by Blackberry. It appears to be one-way communication. The same strategy is used on twitter, except when it comes to negative feedback or customer service issues.  You want to ask your customers questions. What do you think of our new blackberry line? What are you hoping is incorparted in the new phones? Fill in the blank I never leave my blackberry behind when I _______. Or do a caption this type of photo! ANYTHING!!! Don’t not say “ME, ME, ME”, no one likes that.

Samsung Mobile uses all the same social media websites as BlackBerry except for a blog, and they use Google +. Again we will focus on Twitter and Facebook. “Thank Goodness this is getting long enough!”.

Samsung does an excellent job engaging members. On twitter they address their followers as #GalaxyFamily members. They ask everyday questions like, which season premires are

Two Way Communication is a MUST!

Two Way Communication is a MUST!

you look forward to tonight #GalaxyFamily? Or they tell you interesting facts about their products, “Trying to unearth last year’s snow gear from the garage? Your #GalaxySIII comes pre-installed with a flashlight widget!”. They find unique ways to showcase their products without sounding like, “BUY ME! ME ME! BUY ME!”.  For facebook they use the same strategy, but they include pictures of whatever they are talking about. Pictures are great because they will catch the eye faster for any follower, and actually increase the amount of people who read that post. The more people that read it, the more people that will engage!

Samsung Mobil’s customer service is also outstanding. On Facebook Samsung answers back to every fan, it doesn’t matter if they are praising Samsung or complaining about Samsung. Samsung will address their name and then write them a short note. There was one guy who even told Samsung how dedicated he was to their products, and told them they he believed he desereved a free Samsung Galaxy SIII for his dedication to the custom-dragon-samsung-galaxy-s-iii-800x600company. In this he used the computer to draw a picture of a dragon saying, RAWR. So Samsung answered back with a drawing of a Kangaroo on a unicycle. These are not automated responses, each response is custom made… I’m pretty sure they don’t send Kangroos on a unicycle to every follower! Anyway…keep paying attention..it gets better.  The customer loved the reply so much he helped publically share it on a site calld Reddit, gaining a viral share from many of Reddit’s followers. This became a social media sensation, and caught the eyes of Samsung. Samsung then out of thanks sent the follower a customer made free Samsung Galaxy SIII with his dragon picture painted on the phone. That spread even more through social media (Diaconescu, 2012).

Overall, Blackberry has a strong following but they do not engage back with their users to Screen Shot 2013-01-19 at 10.24.38 AMthe full extent. Therefore, I believe that although Blackberry has users engaging with them and a large number of followers its not strengthening their relationships with consumers. I believe Blackberry could focus more on building relationships and less on pushing out their products. Samsung I believe does a great job engaging customers, and building relationships. As long as they keep growing with Social Media it seems like they will continue being a star in the social media industry.

So that was a long one! Thanks for hanging in there! Leave some comments about how you engage with your followers, and how you make sure that you are making it worth their time to visit your social media sites!

Resources:

Shorty awards. (2012, February 13). Retrieved from http://industry.shortyawards.com/category/4th_annual/customer_service

Diaconescu, A. (2012, August 09). Android authority. Retrieved from http://www.androidauthority.com/good-guy-samsung-gives-free-custom-s3-lucky-facebook-fan-exchange-dragon-drawing-110858/

BlackBerry Twitter Account: https://twitter.com/BlackBerry
BlackBerry Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/BlackBerry

Samsung Twitter Account: https://twitter.com/samsungmobileus

Samsung Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/SamsungMobileUSA

Throw Everything I’ve Said Out the Window!

How Great Would This Feel?

You know everything you need to know about social media right? You know some of the best way to use it, you know why it’s important for business no matter who your customer is, and you know how to avoid being a hijack victim. Did you realize you’ve learned all that? WOW… impressive, huh? Take a minute to call up all your friends and brag… I’ll give you the right. You are so smart. Well lucky for you, if you are finally getting comfortable with social media and have really developed an AWESOME strategy… it’s now time to… THROW IT OUT THE WINDOW.

Don’t be scared

Okay, maybe keep some pieces. The social media networks are now maturing, which means there are most likely changes on its way. Those social media networks I named on my first post may not be the best networks for you a year from now. And just like I said in the second post.. . I’m a psychic. So I have some Social Media Evolution Predictions to WOW you.

Social Media will become more specialized.

Hmm… maybe inspired by MySpace?

There are hundreds of different media websites that are focused on a particular interest. For example, BakeSpace is a website  for those who love to cook. It allows you to share recipes , follow mentors, while sharing with old and new friends (“Bakespace,” ). Honestly just discovered this…but may start using it. There are so many undiscovered social media sites to browse! One that I do use is Flixster. This site allows you to check out movie times and download movies to watch across any Google, Android, or Apple device. Of course what I like about it is the social part. When I’m looking up what movies are playing at my local theater, I can instantly see what Rotten Tomatoes rated it, as well as what other people are saying. This has honestly talked me out of some movies I’ve wanted to see, and talked me into trying other movies I’ve ended up loving (of course I can’t name one off the top of my head…but I swear it happened). Basically what I’m saying is that more and more “niche” social networks like these are going to develop, and help cater to special interests. It brings people closer together who share a common interest. Now you don’t have to annoy people who don’t care, just so you can talk about what you love! My sister will be so relieved. “Social media is now starting to mature, fragment and specialize. Facebook, for now, are many people’s “home base”, but as in life, all people have to leave home sometimes. (Moorehead, 2012)”  I believe this to be the same for Twitter as well. These will still remain but that number of users daily will begin to decrease. Don’t worry I, of course, have statistics to back me up! The amount of visitors to these “niche” networks have been growing, with a 48.1% increase in the last three months (Nelms, 2011). Right now they are at the bottom of 50% of networks, but I believe this number will keep on growing (Nelms, 2011)..

More photo and video generated networks

On Facebook and Twitter photos bring in the highest number of engagement across the board, followed by text and video (Murphy, 19 J).  In just 9 months Pinterest accumulated about 120 million unique visitors. In January 2012, the average user was spending about 89 minutes per visit on Pinterest. Guilty as charged… I get so inspired to DIY and start pinning away.. of course I haven’t attempted one project yet, but that’s beside the point! Anyway! Pinterest is tied with Tumblr for the second highest average minutes per visitor, right behind Facebook (Silverman, 2012). At the beginning of 2012 Instagram had 15 million users. WEAK…eh, they could do better. Now Instagram has about 80million users. Now because of this sudden jump, it’s no surprise that 40% of the top brands are now on Instagram (Wasserman, 2012).   Do you get where I’m going here? These are both social media platforms dedicated to viewing pictures, and it’s because of these two ever so popular brands that I believe more photo and video (because let’s face it… random videos are the most entertaining at work) will quickly grow in the social media age.

More Social Media Management Apps

So now that we have all these new photo generated, and so many “niche” social media networks, how in the world are we going to manage them? I’m not sure if Hootsuite will be able to keep up with the 13 cooking networks I’m on. There is going to have to be more companies working on better ways of managing content. They will help users manage their entire social media networks, as well as helping businesses manage theirs. On top of this the social media analytics will have to be more developed, and provide more detailed insight in order to survive with the maturing social media age.  As long as social media is growing, I believe social media management tools will be growing as well.

So now that I gave you the insight into the next year … what are you going to do with it? PREPARE!!! Get ahead of the crowd. Join some niche networks your company fits into, and build awareness before those other brands jump in and overwhelm the user! Find creative ways to take photos and get your message across… POST THEM! Just get out there and be a head of the game…. Or you will have to keep reading these blogs. HOW AWFUL!

Get Ahead! Don’t Be this Guy… It’s Awkward.

Thanks for reading again! YOU ARE THE BEST!

I couldn’t come up with all of this myself … my references:

Bake space. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.bakespace.com/loginjoin/aboutus/

Moorehead, P. (2012, April 10). Facebook is for old people. Retrieved from http://techpinions.com/facebook-is-for-old-people

Nelms, D. (2011, June 16). Retrieved from http://socialmediatoday.com/amzini/306252/social-networking-growth-stats-and-patterns

Murphy, S. (19 J). Mashable | social media. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2012/06/19/how-to-get-more-likes-shares-on-facebook-infographic/

Silverman, M. (2012, February 28). The rapid rise of pinterest. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2012/02/28/pinterest-user-engagement/

Wasserman, T. (2012, August 08). 40% of top brands are on instagram . Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2012/08/08/40-of-top-brands-instagram/

Be Careful and Stay Safe My Friends

Should We All Get One?

So now that you are fully engaged in social media and LOVING everything about it. It’s important to consider any risks that you can encounter with social media. The big one SOCIAL MEDIA HIJACKERS. Yes this is a real thing…GET NERVOUS. But don’t worry I’m also here to suggest how to AVOID being one of those brands. Yes, you can now begin calling me the GREAT MASTER ALLYSON.

Social media sites have minimal security which leaves brands like yours and mine subject to hacking. Facebook alone has about 600,000 compromised logins per day, for super math addicts that’s one hijacked login every 140 milliseconds (Perez, 28Oc). CRAZY.  55,000 Twitter accounts were hijacked on May 8th, 2012, on June 6th(Laird, May), 2012 200,000 accounts were hacked on LinkedIn (Paul, 2012).

Is this How You Are Picturing Me? Don’t Answer

Why is trying to scare us away from Social Media after spending all this time convincing us to use it? Is this girl even sane?”

Just one more story and then the good news!

This one is about a company we all know, and probably hate for the sole reason of their prices. But we use them anyway because…well we HAVE TO… Shell Gasoline.

When Shell gasoline entered the social media frenzy they did a great job engaging fans. Shell has built their Facebook likes to 1,560,393, but more importantly their users are engaged because 15,833 people are talking about the company (Shell Facebook, 2012).  On top of this they have 66,680 twitter followers (@Shell, 2012), 172,334 LinkedIn followers (Shell LinkedIn, 2012). So this is great right?  YES! Who knew so many people liked oil and gas! WOW!

But what are all these followers talking about?

Well for the past few months is been about “Shell’s Social Media Oil Spill”.  In May a website called “Artic Ready” was launched. It appeared with Shell’s logo, and even had the same characteristics of Shell’s website. Mimicking the brand’s attributes almost perfectly and even using their slogan “Let’s Go” in a number of places. One catch… guess who didn’t put up this website. Yep… you figured it out. Now guess who did produce this Shell Oil website? Greenpeace and the Yes Men (Forbes, 2012).  You can tell this is going to be a good story already…

The website has been set up to notify the general public of Shells drilling in the Artic. It poses as Shell’s point of view and their enthusiasm for harming the environment to make money (“Artic ready,” ). GREAT for Shell’s PR! Imagine being on that public relations team… no sleep for weeks. They even went as allowing the general public to create ads. These ads were shared on all forms of social media.

The “Best” Ad, Picked by Greenpeace and the Yes Men, even ended up on a billboard.

Don’t worry it gets worse. Greenpeace and the Yes Men then made fake social media accounts with fake attempts to control the spread of the ads. From there followers began retweeting with statements about how this was an example of corporate social media gone terribly wrong (Forbes, 2012).

So all though social media accounts weren’t hacked, the accounts were hijacked and used as their own. It could have been 100times
worse if the accounts themselves were hacked. Now Greenpeace and the Yes Men have released an official statement taking responsibility for the spoof. All though the damage is done and shell is still working to regain their brand image, they have still chosen not to sue Greenpeace for their spoof (Vinh Tien Trinh, 2012). Otherwise the Shell Company has been posting numerous stories on how Shell is actually helping the environment and its global community.

Now for the Risks… and Some Avoidance Help

So now you probably are dying for some good news? Are you going to have social media PR nightmares tonight?

Statistically good news

750,000,000 plus users login to Facebook every day (Perez, 28Oc). Meaning that of that 600,000 users hacked a day is only 8% of Facebook users (Feel  free to check my math). 50 million twitter accounts are logged in each day, meaning only 0.1% of twitter accounts are hacked (Parr, 2011).  So really it’s not too many people, but either way … WOULD YOU WANT TO BE SHELL RIGHT NOW?

So How to Avoid “Being Shell”?

  1. Don’t Drill in the Artic and Ban Greenpeace from Coming Near Your Ships
  2. Don’t Piss off Greenpeace

Okay seriously…

Here’s how you can avoid being hacked or hijacked.

  1. Use a secure email address when setting up any social media accounts. Hackers hack into your email and then  click  “I forgot my password”, and boom an email appears with a way to change your password. By using a secure email you can avoid, your email being hacked while at the same time avoiding your social media accounts from being hacked (2 for one special I just gave away!)
  2. Hackers research you… yes in a stalker kind of way via internet. They discover everything they can about you, and then they use this to guess your password.  Don’t use your birthday which is posted all over Facebook, your dog’s name which can be found through scrolling your 1000 pictures of it, or any other personal information.
  3. Check all strange emails or files with spyware. If not these geniuses can send you a file that records everything you type. BINGO PASSWORD HANDED TO THEM.
  4. Double check emails you receive from your social media pages. Avoid going to them directly from the email.  Hackers can create an email that looks exactly like your Facebook page, have you click on it which takes you directly to your social media login (but it’s a fake website), and not knowingly you have typed your login into the hackers own page. Check the website address to ensure it’s where you want to be!
  5. For your security settings always use https instead of http. It ensures you are at secure websites.
  6. Don’t have social media accounts automatically save your password
  7. Verify all social media accounts. To do this you will need a company email verification in order to successfully validate your account. This helps users differentiate which accounts are the actual company representatives, and which one are impersonators.

So now that I’ve scared you.. I hope I’ve also helped you! Good Luck… and until next week!

The Real Brains… My References:

Perez, S. (28Oc). Tech crunch. Retrieved from http://techcrunch.com/2011/10/28/facebook-sees-600000-comprised-logins-per-day/

Paul, I. (2012, June 06). Pcworld. Retrieved from http://www.pcworld.com/article/257045/update_linkedin_confirms_account_passwords_hacked.html

Laird, S. (May, 8 2012). Twitter debunks reports of 55,000 hacked accounts. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2012/05/08/twitter-hacked-accounts/

Shell Facebook. (2012, August 07). Shell facebook page. Retrieved from http://www.facebook.com/Shell

Shell LinkedIn. (2012, August 07). Shell linkedin. Retrieved from http://www.linkedin.com/company/1271?goback=.fcs_GLHD_shell_false_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2&trk=ncsrch_hits

@Shell. (2012, August 07). Shell twitter. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/Shell

Forbes. (2012, July 18). Shell oil’s social media nightmare continues, thanks to skilled pranksters behind @shellisprepared. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2012/07/18/shell-oils-social-media-nightmare-continues-thanks-to-skilled-pranksters/

Artic ready. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://arcticready.com/social

Vinh Tien Trinh, B. (2012, July 16). Shell arctic ready: Company won’t sue greenpeace over spoof campaign. Retrieved from

Parr, B. (2011, Oct 17). Twitter has 100 million monthly active users; 50% log in every day [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2011/10/17/twitter-costolo-stats/

Social media hijacking: Don’t be a victim!. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://socialmediamagic.com/blog/social-media-hijacking-dont-victim/

Back for more? Thanks!

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Back for more? Thanks!

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Now that I’ve finally convinced you that Social Media is essential, I want to explain to you why it needs to be mobile. Yep, I’m creating more work for YOU, but it’s worth it I swear. This one takes some time, especially if you have a large inventory. “Oh great… what is she going to make me do now? I’ve done everything she’s asked and she still wants more? She is needy…” Did I forget to mention I was psychic? It will eventually help you grow revenue, so bear with me!

Bar code scanning is an older mobile application that has been progressing more and more with time (don’t you wish everything could do that? Come on economy… catch on to this magnificent trend!).  It has leveled the playing feel and created free publicity for all businesses with low prices.

Okay that’s great and everything but what does bar code scanning actually do? What kind of information can you pull up? By scanning product bar codes with a mobile device’s camera you can pull up not only the price of the item in the store, but also the price of the item at stores near you , as well as online prices. Guaranteeing that you are getting the lowest price for your item!! HOW COOL IS THAT? I just drove an extra 5 miles and saved $20!!! WOHOO! Okay I may be frugal.. but it’s got to be somewhat exciting for you too.. right?

Just in case I’m wrong.. I’ve got more convincing coming your way! With Imagebar code scanners, not only are you getting the lowest price but you are also pulling up reviews. For example, say you are trying to decide between a Samsung 51” LED television and a
Panasonic 51” LED… both have all the features you want… but which one is better? SCAN THE BAR CODE.. this pulls up customer reviews and some apps will even prioritize your friends’ reviews so you can get the utmost personal opinions.

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I hope you haven’t left me for your nearest mall, because now we need to talk about how it will grow your business. I promise after you can sprint to the mall with your new bar code application.

STAY WITH ME PEOPLE!

First here are some stats:

  • 44 million people have a scanner app on their cell phone (AT&T) (your target market has got to be somewhere in there….)
  • 44% use UPC bar codes (AT&T)
  • Between January 2011 and October 2011  more than 10.4million scans passed through the AT&T Code Management Platform (AT&T) (Hint: That’s only ONE cell phone company!)
  • Are you an online company? A global company? Scans come from over 125 different countries every single day! (ScanLife)

So, when you upload your inventory and prices into a mobile bar code scanner application, and a scanner is at another store scanning a bar code/UPC connected to one of your products – there are a few things that will happen.Your store’s product price will pop-up for the customer to compare. Additionally, your company information will show up so consumers can familiarize themselves with the company.

Are your company’s prices higher? It’s okay, it will still give that consumer interaction with your brand. Additionally, if the consumer’s friends have shopped at your store and left reviews, then they may be more willing to shop with you. Personal reviews place a higher value than pricing to some… (not me). Are you adding additional services to your price (installation, free delivery, etc.)? Show this in your description, it may be something other stores aren’t offering.

Lastly, if a consumer scans a UPC of an item stock item at one store, you could reap the benefits of stealing the customer. YESSS! Once they take one walk into your store they will never return to that awful competitor…right?? LET’S HOPE!

So get your inventory uploaded! BUILD … GET CUSTOMERS!

I told you I would convince you…

More people to believe!

AT&T. (n.d.). Scanning: The news. Retrieved from http://www.socialsearchmobile.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/mobile_mkt_solutions_quarterly_newsletter_12-22-11.pdf

ScanLife. (n.d.). Test your mobile bar code iq. Retrieved from http://www.scanlife.com/blog/br/tag/upc/